Cell Article about Science Blogging
Laura Bonetta's article "Scientists Enter the Blogosphere" just came out in Cell (Volume 129, Issue 3, 4 May 2007, Pages 443-445) . UsefulChem got a mention:
Jean-Claude Bradley and his students at Drexel University are experimenting with a live open lab notebook on his blog Useful Chemistry (http://usefulchem.blogspot.com) and wiki (http://usefulchem.wikispaces.com). The blog discusses and analyzes results, with links to the raw data on the wiki.It warms the cockles of my heart to see incoming links from ScienceDirect to our blogs because it means the chasm separating social software from tradition has been bridged one more time.
Bradley's group writes down the experimental plan, the results as raw data, observations, then conclusions—every detail a scientist would include in a lab notebook except that the information is available on the Web for everyone to see and comment on. “We don't just put things that work but also failed experiments. We thought that if we cannot use the data maybe others will find a use for them,” says Bradley. People have come to Useful Chemistry looking for the boiling point of a given compound or a chemical reaction. “It is encouraging to see that,” says Bradley. “Part of what we wanted to do was put small bits of information out there that might be useful.” He has not yet tried to publish any of the data on his blog but says he will soon be in a position to do so. He is well aware that most top-tier journals have guidelines precluding publication of anything that has already been reported, regardless of its format.